ADF joins world’s largest international maritime exercise

Department of Defence

Approximately 1600 Australian Defence Force personnel have joined 26 international partners to undertake the world’s largest international maritime exercise.

Held across training areas in and around the Hawaiian Islands and Southern California from 29 June to 4 August 2022, Exercise Rim of the Pacific 2022 (RIMPAC) is a biennial international military exercise hosted by Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet.

The ADF contribution is substantial and includes HMA Ships Canberra, Supply and Warramunga, P-8A Poseidon aircraft, a submarine, mine warfare and clearance diving capabilities, and a Joint Landing Force led by the 2nd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment accompanied by personnel and capabilities from across Australian Army units.

Chief of Joint Operations Lieutenant General Greg Bilton said Australia’s participation and leadership in the exercise highlights the nation’s enduring commitment to sovereign security in the Indo-Pacific Region.

“RIMPAC demonstrates Australia’s commitment to both the United States and to preserving the freedoms enjoyed by our regional neighbours,” Lieutenant General Bilton said.

“We face complex strategic challenges in the Indo-Pacific region, and the Australian Defence Force will take every opportunity to assure our friends that Australia has the ability and the intent to stand by its alliances, agreements and bilateral relationships.

This year, RIMPAC will feature 26 nations, 38 surface ships, four submarines, land forces from nine nations, more than 170 aircraft and approximately 25,000 personnel.

Lieutenant General Bilton said a central command role will be undertaken by Royal Australian Navy Commodore Paul O’Grady, DSM CSM, who has been appointed to command the multi-national maritime component of the exercise as the Combined Force Maritime Component Commander.

“The trust placed by so many nations in Australia’s tactical and operational leaders reflects the emphasis we place on the training and development of our people,” Lieutenant General Bilton said.

“Overall, I am sure our women and men will prove themselves professional, prepared and an inspiration to our many partners participating in RIMPAC 22.”

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